Farah seeks to end try­ing week on a high note

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

Bri­tish ath­let­ics leg­end Mo Farah will be look­ing for a morale-boost­ing per­for­mance in to­day’s Di­a­mond League meet at the same Lon­don Sta­dium where he will bring down the cur­tain on his stel­lar track ca­reer in Au­gust. The 34-year-old quadru­ple Olympic gold medal­list­who will fo­cus on the marathon af­ter the world cham­pi­onships which run from Au­gust 4th to 13th-goes into the 3000 me­tres af­ter a week in which doc­u­ments leaked by Rus­sian hack­ers Fancy Bears claim a sam­ple he gave in 2015 had to be re-ex­am­ined be­fore be­ing cleared in 2016.

Farah-who is also a quadru­ple world cham­pion at 5000 and 10000 me­tres-hit back by say­ing he will never fail a test but the claims will cast a shadow over his ap­pear­ance at the sta­dium where he lit up the Lon­don Olympic Games in 2012 with his tri­umphs in both the 5000 and 10000m. “The meet is only four weeks be­fore the World Cham­pi­onships so it will be a good chance to see where I am at and what fine tun­ing needs to be done,” said Farah.

“A lot of the world’s best ath­letes come to Lon­don for the meet­ing and it will be like a mini-World Cham­pi­onships in one day.” Cer­tainly with more than 10 Olympic cham­pi­ons down to com­pete there is an air of a cham­pi­onships about it although aside from the men’s 110 me­tres hur­dles-which fea­tures among oth­ers world record holder and 2012 Olympic cham­pion Aries Mer­ritt-it is the women’s events that are the more eye­catch­ing. Ja­maica may be about to bid farewell to su­per­star Usain Bolt but in 2016 Olympic 100m and 200m gold medal­list cham­pion Elaine Thomp­son they look to have some­one who will dom­i­nate the women’s event as he has done the men’s. How­ever, 2015 200m world cham­pion Dafne Schip­pers-who had to set­tle for sil­ver in the 200m be­hind the Ja­maican last year in Rio-is hop­ing she can pro­vide stiff op­po­si­tion.

The 25-year-old Dutch ath­lete is keen to throw down the gaunt­let over the shorter sprint dis­tance and Sun­day will give the 100m 2015 world sil­ver medal­list a chance to strike a psy­cho­log­i­cal blow when she clashes with Thomp­son. “Com­pet­ing in the 100m at this event will be an im­por­tant part of my prepa­ra­tion for the World Cham­pi­onships,” said Schip­pers, who could fin­ish only fifth in the Olympic 100m fi­nal.

“Look­ing at the names in the field, I think it will be a re­ally ex­cit­ing race.” Ken­dra Har­ri­son will hope too to bring the crowd to their feet like she did last year when she set aside the dis­ap­point­ment of fail­ing to make the Amer­i­can Olympic team by tim­ing 12.20sec to break the 100m hur­dles world record that had stood for nearly three decades.

This year she comes into the meet­ing hav­ing ex­or­cised the demons of the Amer­i­can cham­pi­onships af­ter win­ning the ti­tle and she be­lieves she can go on and im­prove her record. “This year I def­i­nitely think I can run an­other per­sonal best, and that’s what I plan on do­ing by the time the sea­son ends,” she told the Daily Tele­graph. Aside from the Di­a­mond League events there will be an emo­tional farewell for Par­a­lympian leg­end David Weir who won three golds in the sta­dium in 2012.

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